Mali. The effects of the civil war between Islamists and government forces plagued the country. Over 350,000 people were estimated to be internally displaced in Mali and over 180,000 had moved abroad. According to the UN, over 3.5 million people in the country were in need of food aid. The UN appealed for funding for the operation in Mali when most of it was taken. Many casualties were demanded in fiery fighting, even among UN soldiers through terrorist acts and land mines.
According to Countryaah.com, Mali population in 2020 is estimated at 20,250,844. The regime seized one of the most important leaders of the Islamists, who waged terror with a Shari’a court by condemning penalties as amputations or stoning of women accused of infidelity.
Critics of the regime questioned the election of new president, Issiaka Sidibé, in January. It was the father-in-law of the president’s son who was named the President of Parliament without significant political merit. The President becomes head of state if the president resigns.
After French and Malian troops drove away Islamist rebels from cities in the north last year, there was continued concern with difficult social conditions and the need for relief. The army had difficulty with control. In February, at least 30 people were killed in a massacre said to be revenge for kidnapping. Tuareger was killed by rival fulani, two people groups fighting for pastures and water, including through livestock theft and robbery.
The peace talks between the government and the rebels went slow. The UN Security Council called for a swift agreement to avoid new fighting.
The UN sent a request to Sweden for contributions to the UN peacekeeping force in Mali, which in November consisted of several thousand men with some Swedish staff officers. Swedish instructors were also in an EU force that trained Mali’s army. Sweden decided to send 250 people with the opportunity to increase to 400. This involved a intelligence company and support group.
In March, Mali’s parliament set up a special court to bring former President Amadou Toumani Touré to trial. Touré, who was deposed in 2012 and lives in exile, is charged with treason when he, as commander-in-chief, failed to stop foreign and hostile forces from taking parts of Mali.
In April, Prime Minister Oumar Tatam Lys’s government resigned. New head of government became the former Minister of Planning Moussa Mara. When he visited the city of Kidal in the northeast, new fighting broke out, many government soldiers were killed and as a result the Secretary of Defense resigned. Several weeks of fighting followed over a hundred casualties. The UN Security Council urged the combatants to lay down weapons.
During the year, the government received criticism from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for having purchased a new aircraft for the president for the equivalent of over SEK 260 million. The IMF, which provided support packages to Mali after the war, felt that it was ill-suited to the fight against poverty and postponed the payment of some aid.
In July, the French military operation in Mali was formally terminated, but several thousand French soldiers remained in the region for a so-called anti-terrorist operation. Mali also signed a defense pact with France. In the same month, peace negotiations started between the Malian government and six rebel groups. They were held in the capital of Algeria, Alger.
Amnesty International reported in August that former child soldiers are in prison in Mali. Amnesty demanded that the children be released, taken care of and given protection. Islamist groups are suspected to be behind the kidnapping of twelve children in northern Mali in November. Two of the children who tried to escape were shot dead. According to the Malian military, the aim was to recruit child soldiers.
Mali reported in October a death in Ebola and in November a total of six, with hundreds of people under observation. In December, the Ministry of Health stated that the country no longer had any Ebola disease.